The Sabres are off today and return to the ice at 10 a.m. Friday before heading to Florida. The big story in the NHL tonight is the return of Sidney Crosby as the Penguins play the Rangers at Madison Square Garden, but there's some breaking news this morning out of Washington that could have a huge impact on the playoff race.
Caps star Alex Ovechkin has left practice early after a collision with teammate Mike Knuble. There's no word yet on the nature of his injury but the Washington Times is reporting Ovechkin was on the ice for about two minutes being attended to by trainers before moving to the bench and eventually leaving.
Ovechkin has 29 goals and 24 assists in 66 games, quite a down year for him. But he's been heating up lately as the Caps have won four straight to seize a three-point lead over the Sabres in the battle for eighth. Washington has four straight road toughies coming up, starting Friday in Winnipeg and moving on to Chicago, Detroit and Philadelphia, so the Caps certainly need the No Longer Great Eight in the lineup.
Here's the 1 p.m. update:
The Washington Post says Ovechkin is OK and making the trip and did not suffer any kind of head injury. The Caps are also looking forward to the return of Nicklas Backstrom.
Meanwhile, Stephen Whyno of the Washington Times has a similar report but also points out the Caps were far from truthful about Ovechkin's status last month, when an "equipment issue" suddenly became an upper-body injury.
So Ovechkin bears watching during the Caps' road trip, both for his play and his health.